Curacao opening - it's official Holland in BRIEF Staff communication magazine for the Rabo Rabobank's first lady Italy upgrade GMC report Looking ahead De Lage Landen celebrates silver New strategy in retail Less cheques Green cattle House-style presentation ISSUE 30/27 JUNE 1994 Friday, May 13, was the culmination of years of hard work and preparation by the staff of the Willemstad office. The oldest foreign operation in the international division, Curacao had long been a rather modest affair. But its new role as service hub for the region meant a radical increase in personnel, and a new building. The bank has appointed Gui Hua Chen as the Shanghai representative. Chen was born in the Chinese financial centre but rounded off her education at the University of Nijenrode business school in the Nether- lands before returning to her home city to take up a senior appointment with ABN/AMRO. Fluent in both Dutch and English as well as Shanghainese and Mandarin, she joins the bank on August 1 to launch the new rep office in the PRC. Chen is the first woman to be appointed at this level in the international division; there is only one other woman in senior management - Hong Kong's assistant general manager and operations chief Cindy Kwong. The Milan office is currently in the process of applying for a branch licence ffom the Bank of Italy. At present, the bank is represented in Italy through its finance company, which will continue to operate along side the proposed branch structure. In addition, Roberto de Cardona and his staff will be moving to new offices in July. Full details in next month's issue. For an overview of the general managers' 1994 conference, please turn to page 3. The agri-project finance team meets in Utrecht on June 24. September 12-16 has been slated for the agri-trade and trade finance account managers meeting. s w ...Jfc M The Netherlands Antilles Central Bank president Emsley Tromp (photo) and chairman Herman Wijffels did the honours at the cer- emony that officially opened the renovated merchant's villa on Wil- lemstad's once exclusive Schar- looweg. The elegant homes had fallen into disrepair over the years, but the Maduro building, once oc- cupied by a prominent banking family, has now been turned into a fitting home for Curacao Rabo- bankers. Among the celebratory luncheon guests was Antilles' prime minister, Miguel Pourier as well as the minister of finance and Cura- cao's finance deputy. 'An opening on this scale is a relatively rare event on Curacao,' says GM Donald Heukels. 'We took the op- portunity to present the bank to the island's professional and fi nancial community. The media coverage was extensive and actual- ly caused us some headaches be- cause we suddenly got an immense stream of job applications from people who wanted to work for us, and a lot of mortgage requests, so the newspaper attention wasn't perhaps always as factual as it could have been.'But no one at Rabobank Curacao is complain- ing. They have become a well- known bank overnight and their building is considered a blue-print for further work on Willemstad's numerous other monuments. A combination of conservation and high-tech solutions has transform- ed the building, while preserving its characteristic elegance and charm. A week after the opening, Curacao's first annual Open Mon ument Day meant around 2,000 visitors explored the bank's new home. 'We'd expected quite a lot of interest,' Heukels says, 'but by the end of the day our staff who were guiding the tours were ex- hausted. At one point, the waiting- time was an hour - and that's in the hot sun. Yet, when you hear that people were saying: Don't bother with that building, go and see the Rabobank, that's the best, then you really feel that all the staff has done to make this work was more than worth while.' Originally set up as a finance company to provide credit to both private and corporate clients on the domestic market, over the past 25 years DLL has grown into a specialized national and international leasing and factoring operation. Although the company has a number of of fices abroad, it is currently looking at the feasibility of set ting up new operations, probably in Spain, and of expanding its factoring operations in Italy to include leasing. The bank will be introducing a new strategie approach to the domestic retail market. In recent years, results in this market have declined and the revised approach is aimed at a turn around by taking customer needs as point of departure. The number of pin code pay- ments has tripled over the last three years. In 1993, the Dutch made 61.3 million electronic transactions. The use of pins has led to a 50-percent decline in the number of Eurocheque-pay- ments. Cattle farmers who invest in en- vironmentally-friendly stalls for their animals can apply to the ministry of agriculture for a 30- percent subsidy up to a maxi mum of NLG 318,000. At the Annual General Meeting on June 9, the bank's new logo was presented to member banks and personnel from Rabobank Nederland. The video presen tation is currently being subtitled in English for the foreign offices and all international staff will have an opportunity to see it in the very near future.

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blad 'Raboband International' (EN) | 1994 | | pagina 1